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8 Cunard Queen Victoria Cruise Reviews for Luxury Cruises to Europe - All

Having cruised well over 15 times as a couple (and Cunard Carnival cruises) let's start by saying that the pursers office had a very negative attitude, both in person and on the phone. The cost of drinks is extortionate I.e. a bottle ... Read More
Having cruised well over 15 times as a couple (and Cunard Carnival cruises) let's start by saying that the pursers office had a very negative attitude, both in person and on the phone. The cost of drinks is extortionate I.e. a bottle of wine £5-6 uk over £40 on the ship plus 15 percent. Cost to us well over £350. The food is adequate at best the fish clearly cooked in a toaster. The speciality restaurant - we ordered fruits de mer not frozen de mer. Tasteless and watery. Their disembarkation procedure is manic. Whatever time it states you can get off is irrelevant. Ours was priority one as they allow the corridors to get chock a block with people and do not control it. Very dangerous. When going through security they do not even check the time you are supposed to get off. A free for all. We shall never go with this so called British company again . There is another American cruise company who do it better. Humbly disillusioned. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We sailed over New Year’s Eve, out of Southampton, with family & friends. This was our first time on Cunard. Windstar, by far, remains my favorite. We stayed 2 nights pre-cruise in London, it was a good choice. The ride to ... Read More
We sailed over New Year’s Eve, out of Southampton, with family & friends. This was our first time on Cunard. Windstar, by far, remains my favorite. We stayed 2 nights pre-cruise in London, it was a good choice. The ride to Southampton was almost 2 hours. Embarkation was smooth and trouble free. The ship itself was very nice. It was a bit glamorous and was still decorated for the Christmas holiday. All public areas were very clean and the ship itself is spacious. It was larger than I expected. The cabin seemed to be of almost standard size compared to other cruises, but had a very small bathroom – 1 sink, and a tiny shower. I found the number of electrical outlets to be adequate for us. The bed was very comfortable with extra pillows (5). Closet space was tight. There were plenty of bars on board, including an English Pub and a Gin Bar. Entertainment was fairly respectable: top floor had a piano player in one lounge, and then a live band mixed with a disc jockey in the dance room next door. Occasionally there was a Harpist or a quartet in the main lobby. Also the orchestra would play once in a while in the Queens Room. There were 2 shows each night in the Main Theater. I’d give each venue and performance a 4 out of 5 rating. Something I thought was interesting – one show was called Hollywood Rocks. They performed some song & dance from Hollywood for almost an hour, then ended with 7 Abba songs (which was the best part) … but Abba has nothing to do with Hollywood. The main dining room was very nice – good menu and very good service (incredibly speedy service from my experiences with main dining, and always with a smile). The buffets were always good but especially the New Year’s Eve midnight buffet (however, I missed it, but my travelling companions went on and on about how nice it was). The New Year count down was great. We were in port in Amsterdam for the midnight count down(11pm ship time) & an impressive fireworks display, then down to the main lobby for the ships countdown(midnight ship time). Cunard did it right; providing multiple venues on board to choose from. We chose the Queens Room where the orchestra was playing. Count down, hats, noise makers, balloon drop, and glasses of Champagne were provided. The casino was lively and the dealers made it enjoyable. The casino used American dollars which surprised me. Due to poor weather our stop in Belgium was cancelled, creating a 2nd sea day. We had 2 activities pre-booked for Bruges via the internet, confirmed 3 weeks prior to the cruise. We lost both with no refund. My advice would be – Do Not pre-book anything unless it’s through the ship itself. The other 2 stops were interesting - Amsterdam & Cherbourg. However …. The ships staff seemed to be put out – especially the bar staff at the Pub. Wow, these guys were terrible. They were always grumpy with a short attitude. With the other staff it was hit or miss with how we’d be greeted and treated. Maybe it's just the British attitude, I don’t know, but I certainly didn’t like it. The daily activities were hit or miss too – people would show up, but the event might be cancelled, you just never knew. The fellow passengers on Cunard were ok, but a little stand off-ish and boring. Dare I say "non-adventurous"? We are used to warm weather cruises, to destinations like the Caribbean and Mexico; usually with Americans, and I’ll say that Americans are much more enjoyable to be with. Dressing up in the evenings was very nice, our group enjoyed that, with Tuxedos and formal gowns for New Year’s Eve. Another cruise on Cunard? I might be talked into it one day. But my next cruise will find me back on Windstar. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
This was for us a "taster" cruise to see if we liked the whole concept of a cruise break/holiday - having become disillusioned with airports and the delays and waiting times. The experience could not have been smoother and more ... Read More
This was for us a "taster" cruise to see if we liked the whole concept of a cruise break/holiday - having become disillusioned with airports and the delays and waiting times. The experience could not have been smoother and more relaxing. Having stayed at a quayside hotel overnight, we waited there for our designated boarding time. The hotel concierge drove us over and twenty minutes later we had embarked, our luggage was whisked away right to our cabin (deck 8 starboard) and we had been issued with our boarding passes which gained entry to everything and covered all the expenses we needed while on board ship. The ship itself is fabulous - big but not daunting and all the public areas are beautifully kept. Fresh flowers everywhere: plus the whole place was tastefully decked out for Christmas. Our cabin steward (Bryan) was excellent and always helpful and attentive - leaving us in peace if we were in the cabin, but buzzing around and replacing towels etc. whenever we seemed to be away. The dining experience was equally excellent. The Brittania restaurant was fine: once we had sorted out that we preferred to dine alone rather than in a big group, The whole ambience of the ship was exciting and interesting (especially if you are a "people-watcher): whether it be the experience of teatime in the ballroom (with a tea dance on Sunday) or sitting in one of the bars or enjoying the entertainment in the theatre (we bagged a box for two of our nights away). The entertainment was good: a lively male singing quartet, a comedian and then the ship's singers and dancers on the last evening with a new show. We also attended a daytime lecture (on the RNLI in Suffolk) which was well done and interesting. Our overall impression (as first-timers) was excellent. We were on deck 8 (just below the aft pool deck). I suspect this might be noisy in the summertime - you could hear people walking about above us on the deck. But nothing was intrusive and people kept to themselves: it is a sedate experience and very enjoyable. We found all the staff (our steward, the waiters, the bar staff and the purser's office) all very helpful as we had a few issues with our card opening the cabin door (keep it away from your mobile phone was the answer!). Even disembarkation was smooth and painless. The system looked complicated (parting with our luggage by 11pm the night before). But it all worked out and we were off the ship earlier that timetabled as the luggage was ready and waiting for us after our last breakfast at 6.30am. The food - excellent throughout. The self-service restaurant (The Lido on the top floor) was well presented buffet-style food - but good - not that we needed it! But the restaurant food was always beautifully presented and the cuisine is a credit to the many staff who must work tirelessly behind the scenes. It would be hard to fault anything we experienced. My only comment would actually be about the fellow guests on board. We were informed well in advance of travelling what the dress code would be: certain evenings informal (jackets for the gentlemen but ties could be optional). Then one night was formal - (dinner suits or dark suits). If you wished to avoid this, you were urged to keep to the top floor buffet restaurant. Despite this, several gentlemen did not wear jackets when asked to and several of them removed their jackets (even on the formal night) and put them on the back of their chairs. I don't think this is on when the air of the whole experience was the create the right atmosphere to meet the occasion. Play the game chaps! I am surprised the maitre'd didn't tap them on the shoulder and ask them to put their jackets on again! The ladies did the occasions proud and many of them looked very elegant indeed. It made for a magical experience to see people looking smart on such an elegant ship such as the Queen Victoria. We had one day on shore and chose the trip to Ypres, Tyn Coyte war cemetery and Flanders Memorial Museum. We were a small group (suited us): but I have to comment that our guide was excellent. He delivered nothing short of a lecture on the nature, causes and details of WW1 as we made our way to the cemetery. He was well informed, communicative and very interesting. Thank you for that: we felt that although these trips ass to the cost of the cruise - on this occasion it was well worth it and we could not have undertaken this (and been so well informed) had we done it ourselves. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We had sailed with Cunard a couple of year's ago on QM2, however this was our first voyage on Queen Victoria, or with an infant! My husband and I booked this cruise with our 8 month old daughter for a short winter break and to try ... Read More
We had sailed with Cunard a couple of year's ago on QM2, however this was our first voyage on Queen Victoria, or with an infant! My husband and I booked this cruise with our 8 month old daughter for a short winter break and to try out Cunard with children. We drove to Southampton to meet the ship and used the port's valet parking service which was incredibly well organised and smooth. This made it so easy to embark, despite all our luggage and baby kit. Queen Victoria was beautiful, very clean and luxurious, just as we had expected. Although sailing full, she was very spacious and even on sea days no areas felt crowded. With a baby in tow we didn't attend many organised activities, skipping the lectures, fencing theatre and dancing, however did enjoy the live music in the various venues and of course tried out the Play Zone with our daughter. There were only a few children on board which meant the nursery was never busy and the youth staff had plenty of time for us. We planned to use the night nursery, so we could have a romantic meal for two, however our daughter decided to stay up until 9pm each night so no chance of dropping her off asleep at this facility! Service from our room steward, the dining staff and from crew all over the ship was very attentive yet polite and discreet. We only had one less than positive experience and that was in the coffee bar. Babies are very well catered for by Cunard and we had pre-requested a travel cot, baby bath and bottle steriliser for our cabin, all of which were exactly as we had hoped. The dining room provided a high chair and jars of Hipp Organic baby food. In port, both Copenhagen and Hamburg, we did our own thing. The shuttle buses laid on by Cunard we excellent and frequent, and free for us to use as we had paid the Cunard fare. The drivers were very accommodating and happy helping to load our daughter's buggy into the luggage compartment. We really enjoyed the aquarium in Copenhagen, which we travelled to by metro, and found a great regional German restaurant for lunch in Hamburg where our family was made very welcome. We stayed in a BC balcony cabin towards the aft on the port side of the ship. It was larger than average and had an extended, slightly strangely shaped balcony as was at the end of the hump. The room was immaculate and the extra space was useful, although we could not place the cot in the obvious position as this was straight under the air con which was very powerful and created a strong draft. In retrospect an outside cabin would have been fine for us on this cold winter itinerary as we didn't use the balcony at all, other than to watch the fireworks as we sailed away from Hamburg. We had early dining in the main dining room which worked well for us. The food was excellent quality and delicious. I particularly enjoyed the tuna sashimi and rack of lamb. Our daughter napped in her buggy some evenings and joined us for dinner in her high chair other nights. She loved all the attention from the waiting staff and other guests and behaved very well at the table, something we had been a little nervous about beforehand. We also ate lunch in the dining room several days which worked very well for us, and once in the pub although we were disappointed with the food here, especially the steak pie. We had breakfast delivered by room service each morning, which was faultless. We had several sets of photos taken on board, however were not that impressed with the quality of all the photographers. The pictures were also very expensive. The shops on board were well stocked with clothing however there did not seem to be much high end jewellery or choice of watches available, which was a surprise. The staff in the art gallery were very friendly and approachable. We particularly enjoyed the Commodore Club for the views and delicious canapes and cocktails. Disembarkation was fine but a bit of a drag. Passengers disembarked by cabin floor rather than as and when they wished, which was rather tedious. I am not sure this made things any smoother. To conclude we had a great trip on a beautiful ship. The ship was very child friendly despite being classy and elegant. All the children on board appeared well behaved and dined with their parents in the evenings. The children's club facilities were great however I think would have struggled if the number of children on board had been significantly higher. We plan to return to Cunard as a family of four in 2017! Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Review of Cunard Queen Victoria This was our first cruise ever, and for the purposes of the review I suppose it is prudent to note that my partner and I are in our late 30’s - which is quite young for Cunard passengers. SHIP ... Read More
Review of Cunard Queen Victoria This was our first cruise ever, and for the purposes of the review I suppose it is prudent to note that my partner and I are in our late 30’s - which is quite young for Cunard passengers. SHIP The Queen Victoria is a beautiful ship, both inside and out. We saw in several ports bigger ships, but in my opinion when the QV lacks in size on some of these behemoths is the fact that it is stately and elegant. The outside areas on Decks 3, 9, 10 and 11 are lovely and you do feel at times as if you have 'stepped back in time' to be on this ship. If you get up early enough (as my partner and I did a couple of times to experience dawn in a couple of beautiful ports) you will see the deck hands hard at work cleaning the ship every morning to keep the ship spotless. EMBARKATION We Embarked in Civitavecchia, and flew into Rome on a Cunard chartered BA flight from Heathrow. Flight was on time, and check in was painless and easy. One of the small downsides was the situation once we arrived in Rome. The bags took an absolute age to arrive, and once we had given them up to the helpful Cunard reps (the last time we would see our bags for a good while) we were directed around by locally sourced staff working on behalf of Cunard. This wouldn't have been an issue if they had told us what was going on but passengers were herded from place to place without any explanation of what was going on, seemingly to walk to a location simply to then stand with no information for 10-15 minutes, before repeating the process to another location for another wait. Eventually after a good while of being sent from place to place we were on the coach to Civitavecchia. I will note now that if you are being taken anywhere by Cunard they will massively over-estimate the time it will take when they tell you how long the journey is - planning for a worst case scenario i suppose! The drive to Civitavecchia, billed as 70-90 minutes, took about 45. We walked from the coach directly into the pier reception area and were checked in very quickly indeed - a couple of pictures, give over the credit card, and then through security and you are on - I had read horror stories about wait times, but from Coach - Ship took all of 10 minutes, maximum. Really slick and professional I thought. We went directly to our stateroom on Deck 5 midships, the cabin was ready and looking great (more of this later) however but no luggage yet (this was to be expected) so we went off for a tour of the ship and a bite to eat in the Lido buffet on deck 9. I thought the Embarkation process was absolutely magnificent and apart from the situation in Rome airport with the local reps couldn't really fault it (and even that was a minor annoyance) I had read reviews that stated you need to surrender your passport - this was not the case with us. TIP: If you are on a lower deck (2, 3 or 4) instead of waiting for the lifts at midships when you embark, just walk up the stairs - this was the one and only time we had real issues with getting in the lifts as so many people were getting on at once. It doesn’t take long and had I known, even on Deck 5, I would have walked up the stairs to avoid the wait for the lift. THE CABIN We were on deck 5 mid-ship, with a 'restricted view' - I did not find the view a bother at all and could see everything. It possibly limited your photo opportunities, but to be honest I didn't spend a great deal of time on the Balcony anyway so it didn't bother me in the slightest. If I had the choice again I would have gone for an unrestricted view but if your budget will only let you go for the restricted view, just go for it! The ship isn’t very old, less than 10 years, and the state of the Cabin reflected this. It was spotless and very nicely decorated, with a king size bed, dressing table, sofa (which I believe also turned into a bed), coffee table etc. Nice towels, bathrobes and slippers were provided and the amenities in the bathroom were of a high quality (Penhaligon’s) and refreshed should you require (although our steward did need a bit of prompting in this regard). There’s a refrigerator, hair dryer, safe, and several electrical outlets. I knew from reading reviews that UK outlets were provided, however since you have one UK, one US and one European, if you want to use more than one power outlet at once, bring a 4 way power strip or an adapter if you have one. The bed was lovely, with a huge abundance of pillows, and excellent quality bedding. Bathroom was slightly cramped but it was designed very well so you soon got used to the reduced dimensions. The fridge was stocked with water and cans of soft drinks, and the prices for these were fairly reasonable. There was a complimentary half bottle of champagne on ice waiting for us when we got in our room. We saved it for sail away rather than devouring it immediately! The one downside to the room is the size and quality of the television. It is small at 21” and the reception was not of a high quality. The choice of channels is quite limited. However, I didn’t go on the cruise to watch television, I can watch television at home so it didn’t hamper my enjoyment of the cruise. LAUNDRY There is a laundry on every floor, but be warned they are busy. There were three washers and three dryers, open from around 0730 to 2100. Use of the machines was free and the soap was also free. Getting a machine seemed to be a challenge as they were always busy with lots of passengers waiting. I did not need to wash any items but I did have to iron a few things, and there tended to be a queue to do this. However not a huge one and didn’t take a huge amount of time. If I were to go again, I would probably take less clothes and simply use the Laundry service for a few select items, as I didn’t think the charges were astronomical for this service from what I could gather (compared to the pricing for some other things – more on that later) DINING There are two levels of Dining, one for Britannia level passengers, and the Queens/Princess grills for the higher levels of passenger – We obviously did not have access to these grills so I cannot comment on them. We had requested a table for two in the Britannia and were granted this, however on reflection I think next time I will state no preference/larger table, as some of the couples who were randomly mixed on the larger tables seemed to be having a whale of a time. However, this is highly dependent on whom you get paired with, and as I will go on to state throughout this review, you could well be unlucky in this regard. Our neighbour on the first evening ordered a sirloin steak well done and then spent 20 minutes complaining loudly to the waiter that it was tough! If you’re going to ruin a steak by ordering it well done madam, don’t be surprised that it’s ruined – you made that happen, not the chefs! We were given a table on the upper floor of the Britannia on the 2nd seating (8:30 dine time) again, I'm in two minds as to which would be the most advantageous – earlier seating at 6:30 means you have more time to enjoy the evening activities, however it does curtail your daytime activities. A quandary you can figure out for yourselves! We had one waiter with two assistants (Wilfredo, Srdan, and Marius), and a dedicated sommelier assigned to our section (Milo). All 4 of these gentlemen were an absolute delight and worked SO hard to keep myself and my partner happy over the course of our voyage. I actually submitted commendations for them as I thought they were absolutely amazing. They really enhanced our voyage and our dining experience every night was amazing. The food is excellent quality, although on occasion slightly rich and you do end most evenings feeling extremely full! (Not that there is anything wrong with that!) Some of the choices I made over the course of the week were an absolute delight – The Beef Wellington and Baked Alaska were particular highlights. We did enjoy breakfast and lunch in the dining room as well, but not always, often choosing the Lido over the more ‘formal’ setting of the dining room for either the breadth of choice or because we were in a bit more of a hurry. Dining in the Britannia is not a rushed experience (nor should it be) ALTERNATIVE DINING You can dine on Deck 2 in the Veranda, which is high quality French food, for a surcharge, or in the Lido Buffet on Deck 9. We did not bother booking the Veranda; I thought the quality of the food in the Britannia was more than adequate for our needs. We did walk around it when not open though and it is very tastefully decorated and I am sure the experience in there would be excellent. We enjoyed several lunches and breakfasts in the Lido on deck 9. The Lido buffet is huge, with areas that we didn’t even notice until several days into the cruise. Breakfast in the Lido is a cornucopia of choice, from Waffles and Pancakes (and Eggs) cooked to order, to anything and everything that you might expect for breakfast, be you American, British, or Australian (or indeed many other nationalities!) So much choice that I can’t even begin to explain in words – I don’t have enough words. Suffice to say whatever you want for breakfast is there. I guarantee it, including huge quantities of fruit and breads. For Lunch it’s much of the same, choice wise, with additional areas that come into play, most notably a pizza and pasta station where they will cook your order fresh each lunchtime – the pizza was of excellent quality. They also serve an informal ‘afternoon tea’ in the Lido and also have sections dedicated to fresh donuts, cookies and cupcakes at seemingly random times of the day. It literally never closes, you can get something there 24 hours a day, should you require. There is also a Lido bar and grill at the aft serving ‘fast’ food like Hamburgers, hot dogs and French fries. Also it should be noted that every day you can take ‘proper’ afternoon tea in the Queens Room down on deck 2 which is very nice indeed, accompanied by a string quartet (Very elegant). There is also a champagne afternoon tea available for a surcharge but once again we didn’t see the need to partake of this. It’s also worth noting that the Lido does themed nights (for another surcharge). Room Service is also available 24 hours but I felt no need to take advantage of this at any point. TIP The Lido can get very busy at ‘obvious’ times. (9am for breakfast and 1pm for lunch) – it’s sometimes a challenge to find a table at these times, although I never completely failed to find one – it just required an eagle eye! SHOPPING Like most cruise ships this ship has shopping at the Royal Arcade. There were some very competitive buys in perfume, leather goods and liquors. Sales are a common occurrence. SPA The Spa looked amazing and Cunard pushed it quite heavily, but this would be one of my main criticisms of the QV. The prices are (in my opinion) astronomical for the services provided. If they reduced the prices in the Spa I felt like we would have actually used them but I didn’t think we could really justify this. If you have plenty of money though, it did look amazing. EMPIRE CASINO This has to be one of the smallest casinos on the seas. Located on Deck two, there are enough slots, roulette and card games to keep one busy. ROYAL ARCADE This is shopping and as with most ships there is a small retail outlet where one can purchase from a limited selection of clothes, watches, jewellery, etc. There was a store selling essential items and also a book store – although the shops are nice you do seem to pay full whack for everything but if you have forgotten any essentials you will find yourself covered. Once again I didn’t come on a cruise to go shopping, but the fact that they were there was a nice touch. THE ROYAL THEATER One of the visual highlights of the ship. A beautiful room indeed, seating for a lot of people and a wide variety of shows on in the evenings and insight talks from subject experts during the day. The productions were of a decent quality but nothing amazing, but still a fun way to spend an hour or so in the evening before or after your meal! DECK CHAIRS & SEATING Really nice deck chairs on the cruise and they seem to be dotted everywhere where there is room on the upper decks. Although Prime positions go quickly, we never had a problem finding somewhere to relax on deck, either in the Sun or the Shade if required. INTERNET I heard from several passengers horror stories about the speed of Internet on board. I didn’t need to use it as we were only on for a week and I could use my phone in any cafe when in port with free wifi, so I just limited my use to those times – this did not bother me in the slightest. Again I don’t want to spend my holiday checking my emails! POOLS One on the aft of deck nine and one in the mid-forwards section of the ship on deck 9. The pools were rarely busy but a lot of the passengers enjoyed sunbathing next to them. Two hot tubs by each pool as well. Very nice if not enormous, but then when are pools enormous on board – I used the pool twice and the temperature was perfect. There were towels by each pool and in several other common areas – I had read reviews stating you needed to take your towels from your room – this is definitely NOT the case! YOUR FELLOW PASSENGERS Now onto my biggest gripe of the cruise. This ship had about a third of the passengers from the United States followed by the UK and Australia. The remainder was truly a global mix. Many were seniors. Very few (perhaps less than a dozen) children were aboard. The ships’ dress policy stresses appropriate dress all over the ship in the evenings. They mention that there is strict enforcement. Well I couldn’t disagree with that more. There was absolutely no enforcement. At dinner where a jacket is required for men I saw several men in casual shirts with no jacket in the Britannia dining room and some of the women looked downright scruffy. I am not a snob by any means (as you will see shortly!) but one of the driving factors behind our decision to go Cunard was to experience the evenings as an ‘event’ and dress up. Well some of the passengers really push the limits of what should be deemed acceptable in this regard. Formal nights had a much higher ‘hit rate’ of passengers dressing up and making an effort, but some of them still really did push their luck in this regard. If you are going to pay for a Cunard cruise and you know the dress policy, why would you then ignore it? It doesn’t make sense to me. A less formal cruise would save you money if you detest dressing up that much. I suppose the trend away from Smart/Formal attire is a relentless one and even Cunard cannot escape forever. I think personally this is a shame. This takes me onto the rest of the passengers and their attitude. Although we met a great deal of nice and pleasant people on board, it was one of the main detractions of life on board that there were a significant minority of awful people on board. The personality and behaviour of some of these people was appalling. I saw several instances in bars, dining rooms and out on deck when passengers were not just rude to staff, they were downright abusive. Some of them treated the staff like slaves. I was horrified by some of this behavior and went out of my way to be as polite and thankful to the staff as I could be, just to try and redress the balance. I would say that if you say good morning/good afternoon/good evening to everyone you pass; approximately three quarters of them will return the greeting with a smile. The disgusting quarter of them who think they are better than everyone else on the planet will look upon you with disdain, but it’s wise to remember that you are the better person, and manners cost nothing. I lost count of the people I held doors open for who acted as if I was their personal butler rather than a fellow guest being polite. How hard really is ‘please’ ‘thank you’ etc? Apparently these simple words are too much effort for some people. TOURS ON SHORE We mostly preferred to do our own thing in this regard and the prices of some of the trips did seem a bit excessive and we talked to a couple of guests about their experiences and it seems they are very mixed. Some tours are excellent and some are very poor, and there appears to be no way of knowing in advance which is which! However, we got lucky – we booked the Doges Palace/St. Marks Basilica and Gondola ride tour in Venice, and it was absolutely brilliant, our guide was excellent and I enjoyed every moment of it! Well done Cunard! They did mess up though in advance of the tour, saying that our tour tickets would be outside our stateroom the night before the tour, and then they never turned up. Sadly this then led to me rushing around to get them in the morning before the tour, and after bizarrely telling me off for something Cunard had messed up, the member of staff on the tour desk printed us a couple of duplicates. I got the impression that you do pay over the odds for tours and it does seem like a huge money making exercise to me. I think you roll the dice and see if you get lucky on the tour front, we did but make sure you read up on them in advance and make sure that the tour at least provides you with exactly what you want to do, at least then if you do pay over the odds you don’t mind because it was exactly what you wanted! DAILY NEWS AND EVENTS The ship provides both a daily news summary and daily events bulletin to your stateroom. Some of the Port guides were better than others, some including Maps and some without, but on balance they were informative and helpful and we carried them around with us to plan our days. SHIP TOURS We missed the announcement of the bridge/back of house tour which was a shame, would have loved to have done it. We did do the galley tour with executive chef Mark Oldroyd and he was brilliant, giving us loads of interesting information and introducing us to a lot of the chefs on duty at the time preparing our lunches – a really nice passionate guy, both about his work and about Cunard. I was impressed he knew every single member of staff personally – there are hundreds of them! One of the best parts about the galley tour was seeing it was clear that the chefs enjoy their work – they all looked very happy and cheerful in their work. It seemed to me as an outsider looking in that Cunard must treat their staff well. PHOTO GALLERY Simple review of the photographs – very nicely done, but hugely overpriced. We looked at the prices and decided that at the end of the week we’d choose ONE to have rather than several. If you want a selection of photos and an album, it will cost you several hundred pounds – for a few photos and an album! Even one picture we had cost me £25. It’s a lot of money for a picture. There isn’t a hard sell at least which is a plus point, there are photographers everywhere especially on formal nights but if you don’t want your picture taken, don’t queue up DANCING The Queens Room is a very large room where lots of activities happen – fencing classes, ballroom dancing classes, afternoon tea etc. It has a large dance floor open every evening for your dance pleasure. From a man with two left feet, the mixture of dancing on offer was amusing. From one Japanese couple taking it SUPER seriously and throwing themselves about with abandon to older couples moving slowly around the dance floor, there is always something interesting to see. Some of the people thought they were on strictly I think! There is also a ‘nightclub’ on deck 10 called Hemispheres which was more to my tastes, although I was often too full or tired to enjoy it for a long period of time! BARS There is the Queens Room, the Champagne Bar, the midships lounge and the Chart Room---all elegant and a nice place to relax with a drink. The service was excellent in all of the bars. One step up from these is the Commodore Club at Deck 10 forwards. One of my favourite bars of all time, you get a great view from the front of the ship and absolutely brilliant service - and some quite wonderful (if pricey) cocktails. This is offset slightly by the snacks and canapés you will be served to go with your drinks, which were varied and delicious. At the slightly more ‘rough and ready’ (although obviously, as it’s Cunard, not really rough and ready) end of the scale you have the Golden Lion pub opposite the Casino on Deck 2. This is a great little pub with the cheapest drinks on the ship (basically UK pub prices before the service charge) and some varied entertainment – live sports, quizzes, bingo and pianists/jazz bands – You’ll enjoy the Pub. They only do food for a short period of time (12-2) but it’s excellent pub grub, the fish and chips in particular was delicious. The quizzes were taken very seriously by some! LIBRARY This ship has the best library we have ever encountered aboard a cruise ship. Located on Decks 2 & 3, there are hundreds and hundreds of books that can be checked out. Even if you are not a reader visit this library. It is one of a kind and a beautiful space. DISEMBARKATION Smoother than Embarkation, bags outside the room the night before by 11pm, they were gone in a flash. The transfer to the airport in Venice took no time at all and the flight was again on time – once again slightly ruined by some of the ruder contingent aboard ship but I’d gotten fully used to their behaviour by then! SUMMARY I absolutely loved my first cruise on board the QV. The Ship is fantastic and the service is excellent. I enjoyed the formality of the ship and dressing up as an event for dinner. It’s not for everyone but we loved it. Next time I would have no hesitation in going with Cunard, although I think we’ll try a more casual cruise line to compare the two. We are still novices at this after all! The food was excellent, and the choice is bewildering at times. The Room was very nice and we had no complaints at all with our Steward who was attentive and serviced our room constantly without us ever actually seeing him! Downsides are the size and quality of the Television, the prices for the following services: Spa, Photos and Tours and of course back to the rudeness and attitude of some of the guests. I would have no hesitation in recommending the Queen Victoria or sailing aboard her again! Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
2nd time with Cunard as we have previously sailed on Queen Elizabeth. The Good We like the lack of rock climbing walls a water slides etc that you now find on many cruise ships today. The dress code, as we enjoy dressing for ... Read More
2nd time with Cunard as we have previously sailed on Queen Elizabeth. The Good We like the lack of rock climbing walls a water slides etc that you now find on many cruise ships today. The dress code, as we enjoy dressing for dinner. The fact that it is more for couples than families with children. The not so Good The food was ok but certainly not fine dining and we have had a better standard of food on an Airtours ship. The service is generally ok, but it doesn't meet expectations generated by the marketing "impeccable white star service". In fact when we needed to complain we did find that we were made to feel like second class passengers, and this is the main problem with this ship & Cunard if you are "Britannia" class passengers. There are a number of areas that are off limits to Britannia passengers and are exclusively for Queens and Princess Grill passenger I.e. First class. Many of the things that you come to expect as included on other cruise lines e.g use of the Spa, are optional extras with Cunard if you are not a first class passenger ( even though you probably pay more for your cruise than with other cruise lines). The decks and hot tubs are too small to cope with the passengers numbers on "days at sea" ( unless you are first class where you have a separate deck area). We requested two cabins close together but one was forward port the other aft starboard, but at least they were on the same deck. We requested late sitting but were allocated early and it was only after several argument with Roal the Maitre de that it was eventually sorted out on the third night. In summary If you can afford to go Queens Grill standard ( first class) this is probably the best ship for you, if not research other cruise companies like Princess and particularly the ship, to get the right one for you I.e. Is it for families and children or for couples? is it formal or informal? and you will get a much better standard of service, food and overall experience than with Cunard. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
We are a couple in our mid thirties who took a seven night cruise on the queen Victoria from Rome to Venice. This formed part of a wider European vacation. Overall we did enjoy our holiday but we wanted to make this review so passengers ... Read More
We are a couple in our mid thirties who took a seven night cruise on the queen Victoria from Rome to Venice. This formed part of a wider European vacation. Overall we did enjoy our holiday but we wanted to make this review so passengers can be informed as the queen Victoria is a different set up to other cruises. We were in a deluxe inside room on level 8. Perfect floor. One down from the buffet, pools and generally nicer to be higher up. The room was big, well serviced, of high quality and our deal came with a bottle of verve on arrival which was a lovely touch. The boat is very luxurious and has strict dress requirements. We attended the main restaurant on two nights, one formal, one not (both require a jacket). Although a lovely room the food was relatively cold and by way of example would you expect tinned pears in a pear and rocket salad in a five star restaurant? Advice.....if you can't get fresh pears don't make that salad. The room was understaffed with drinks taking a long time and although the food was nice it was not our scene. As a vegetarian I was offered a menu every day to choose from for the next night which was wonderful. But....after two nights we tried the buffet. Yes you collect your own food and the chairs aren't pretty but it's a five star buffet. Hot food, lots of choice and if you don't like the wealth of food on offer fresh pizza and pasta can be made to order. You don't go on a boat like that for pizza but we did have one one night when we didn't like the buffet choices and it was lovely. Best of all you can choose the time you eat dinner, go In normal clothes and it's quiet. Drink service is fast and easy. We spent a couple of nights watching the sunset whilst everyone else either ate in the first sitting of the posh restaurant or were getting blamed up for second sitting, it was magical. Pools are fine, busy though, chairs taken quickly on sea days so we sat at the tables, smoking side most people avoid but few smoke so it's nice and quiet. The age demographic is older, 60, 70s and the main conversation topic is boasting about the last cruise they went on. We felt quite looked down on by some, although some people were lovely. Mostly though if you can ignore people who think they are better than they actually are then it is fine. All the staff are lovely but these European destinations are packed with so many boats when you arrive you get no feel for the country. Souvenirs are tacky, crowds are awful. For that reason we would not go on another cruise until we have mobility issues. This cruise caters beautifully for the elderly. There is dancing, instrumentals, options to basically not walk at all. We only watched the comedian show who was good, otherwise we watched free movies in the room, as social areas you have to wear a jacket. Coffee card is a con for espresso drinkers, we were sold a free coffee with every ten.... Espresso is cheaper than milky coffees but counts for one use. We asked specifically when buying about espresso and this card was blatantly mis sold. Alcohol is very pricey. We had the soda package as we like soda water, costs 2.75 usd per glass otherwise. Spa is nice, has specials each day which are the best value, best value is on a port not a sea day. You have to pay 300usd to use part of the spa for 7 days.....all adds up so if you want all of the services book with someone who gives you what seems like too much on board credit but geez you need it just to have a normal holiday. We had booked one port excursion but cancelled as we didn't fancy going out anywhere with the people on the boat. No refund. Most ports you can do on your own anyway but I would suggest not booking as they don't offer refunds, In general if dressing up is your thing, you don't mind crowds and are either a bit full of your own importance of can ignore people who are its a nice cruise. Just expect extra costs. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This review is for the last leg of the world cruise, New York to Southampton, 8 nights. I have sailed twice on Queen Mary 2 doing westbound transatlantics, this time the timing on QV fit my schedule better. Overall summary I loved the ... Read More
This review is for the last leg of the world cruise, New York to Southampton, 8 nights. I have sailed twice on Queen Mary 2 doing westbound transatlantics, this time the timing on QV fit my schedule better. Overall summary I loved the ship and the experience on QV. My balcony stateroom was perfect, and as described on the Cunard website. thanks to new matresses during the refit, the bed was extremely comfortable...tough to get going in the morning! I love QM2 but I have to say that there are parts of Queen Victoria that I like more. For example, the Commodore Club is a really fantastic room, much better views than QM2. The music provided by pianist Carl Nuschi just pushed it over the top for me. I was there for pre and post dinner drinks every night. Got to know the staff too, who were great. And the wait staff at all the bars do it right: attentive but no pushy like so many cruise lines. Also love the lido deck, with the open feel of the Pavillion pool, the very easy to get around buffet, the winter garden and finally the aft pool. So many comfortable spots. Food was very good in the Lido and Brittania dining room. I dined in the Verandah one night did find it to be another notch up. Enrichment is another thing that Cunard excels at. We had several really interesting speakers including Terry Waite. Fantastic. I loved every day on board and was very sad to have to get off! Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Queen Victoria Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 3.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.7
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 3.0 3.7

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